Last week’s Brexit negotiations, conducted by video conference, failed to come to an agreement on fisheries. Michel Barnier, the EU negotiator (and former French fisheries minister), insisted that continued European access to British territorial waters was a prerequisite of any deal, and David Frost, his British counterpart, replied that this was ‘incompatible with our status as an independent coastal state’. If there is going to be no deal as a result of fishing, as seems increasingly probable, we are going to have a lot more fish to eat, but we’re also going to have to eat a lot more fish.
For an island surrounded by fish, Britain has never really been keen on seafood. Never: an analysis of skeletons from a Pictish burial ground in Scotland, published a couple of weeks ago, showed that the Picts ate beef and pork but no fish, despite living in what is now the fishing village of Portmahomack.